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May 31, 2012

Medical students learned on the bodies, now honor the donors

(Continued)

"It's just such a waste to put him in the ground," she told several medical students at a reception last week after the Mass. The family had asked the hospice about body donations. From the list they they received, Georgetown was the first place they called.

Impressed by Georgetown's respect for donors and their families, she told the students that she and her youngest son David, 40, had also turned in paperwork that day to become donors.

"Hopefully, we're not over here too soon," she said.

After the service, Linn and David drove to the cemetery to see where the remains would be buried. Section 79 is at the back of the sprawling cemetery, near a wooden fence. An upright granite slab sits in the middle of a grassy patch. In capital letters, it reads: "In Memoriam Those who gave of themselves that others might benefit."

It wasn't the big ornate tombstone that Linn had imagined. But it was very nice, just the same. She stood for several minutes, looking at the spot, between two big pine trees by the back fence. She wanted to remember the landmarks so she could find her way back, after Georgetown buries her husband's remains next month.

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